Summer 5777

Join us for one or more of our upcoming summer programs and events. If you have any questions about Adult Learning at PAS, please contact Beth Levick, Manager of Synagogue Programming at or 212.369.2600, x146.




Lecture & Concert: Blowin’ in the . . . Sounds of . . . Hallelujah: A Generation of Jewish Singer-Songwriters who Changed America

Tueday  | June 27
6:45 pm | Lecture: Dr. David E. Kaufman
8:00 pm | Concert: Cantor Shira Lissek, Cantor Rachel Brook, and Beth Styles
Some fifty years ago stellar Jewish musicians reinvented American music, reshaped American culture, and revolutionized our very consciousness. In an era when culture and politics joined forces to initiate a series of social changes, a number of young singer-songwriters drew on the traditions of American folk music, Broadway's Tin Pan Alley, and the new Rock ‘n’ Roll to create the soundtrack for the new age dawning. We still listen to this music today, and it still moves us as it did in the 1960s. But do Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, and Leonard Cohen represent “Jewish” music? 
Cost: Free, but advanced registration is required.
Register here.

Dr. David E. Kaufman is a scholar and teacher of American Jewish history whose first book, Shul with a Pool: The “Synagogue-Center” in American Jewish History, established him as a leading historian of American Judaism and Jewish communal life. He has served professor on the faculty of Hebrew Union College (HUC) in Los Angeles and Hofstra University on Long Island, and currently teaches on the New York campus of HUC. Dr. Kaufman is the founding director of NEW YORK JEW: Center for New York Jewish History, Culture, and Community [website under construction].

Beth Styles is a producer, composer, musician, and vocalist who directs a multifaith choir in Stamford, CT and serves as Artist in Residence at Temple Sinai of Stamford. Beth collaborates with houses of worship, clergy, and leadership to produce compelling multifaith events and creates arts programs for people living with dementia. A writer/arranger of Jewish liturgical music, Beth is one of the winners of the 2016 Shalshelet award for new Jewish music.


Lecture: Gender and Identity

Tuesday | July 11 | 7:00 pm
Abby Stein
Join us for an evening with Abby Stein, as she speaks about gender and identity in the context of our world today.
Cost: Free, but advanced registration is required.
Register here.

Abby Stein is a Jewish educator, speaker, and trans activist. She was born and raised in a Hasidic family of rabbinic descent. In that world Abby attended Yeshiva, completing a rabbinical degree in 2011. In 2012, she left the Hasidic world to explore different world views. In 2015 Abby came out as a woman of trans experience. In 2016 Abby was named by The Jewish Week as one of the "36 Under 36" young Jews who are affecting change in the world. She is a third-year student studying gender studies and political science at Columbia University.


Film Screening: ON THE MAP

Tuesday | July 25 | 7:00 pm
Winner of many Audience Choice Awards for Best Documentary, ON THE MAP tells the against-all-odds story of Maccabi Tel Aviv’s 1977 European Championship, which took place at a time when the Middle East was still reeling from the 1973 Yom Kippur War, the 1972 Olympic massacre at Munich, and the 1976 hijacking of an Air France flight from Tel Aviv. Through the of lens of sports, ON THE MAP presents a much broader story of how one team captured the heart of a nation amidst domestic turmoil and the global machinations of the Cold War.
Stay afterwards for a talk back with Jeff Bukantz.
COST: Free, but registration requested .
Register here.

Jeff Bukantz
is the General Chairman of the 2017 Maccabiah USA Organizing Committee. Bukantz is also First Vice President for Maccabi USA.A Maccabiah Alumnus and Olympic Team Captain and Referee, he participated in four Maccabiah Games as a member of the USA Fencing Team, where he won 13 medals, including three gold.  






Shulhan Ivrit

Mondays | July 10, 17, 24; August 7 | 7:00 – 8:30 pm
Facilitator: Brian Lustbader

Intermediate and advanced level Hebrew speakers are invited to spend an hour practicing conversational Hebrew. Come to one session or come to all to deepen your connection with Israel and the Jewish people by speaking Hebrew.
Register here.


Essential Essays

Tuesday | June 6 | approx. 8:00 am, after morning minyan 
Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove

Join in a discussion of Jewish philosophy, theology and thought. Pick up the essay for each week from the literature rack in the main lobby. The essay is also distributed via a weekly email; if you wish to be added to the distribution list, please contact the rabbi’s office at 212-369-2600, x120.


Contemporary Jewish Thought

Tuesday | June 6 | 11:30 am | Rabbi Neil Zuckerman
Each week, explore a reading about contemporary Jewish experience and thought. Currently the class is reading Putting God Second: How to Save Religion from Itself by Rabbi Doniel Hartman.


Cosponsored by the Women’s Network

Find Your Key! Women Singing in Community

Tuesday | July 18 | 6:30–7:45 pm
Cantor Rachel Brook

Love to sing but told you shouldn’t? This is the place for you! We will explore the music of our PAS services and create a safe space to share our love of singing, gaining confidence and competence. Our tradition teaches us, Kol ha-n’shamah t’hallel Yah, Let everything with breath praise God. (Psalm 150) This includes you! Wine and cheese will round out the evening.
Register here.


Midtown Lunch & Learn: The Great Principle of the Torah

Wednesdays | July 12, 19, 26 and August 2 | 12:30 – 1:30 pm
Rabbi Neil Zuckerman
What is the “great principle of the Torah”? Jewish tradition is rich with conversations about topics like belief in God and questions of good and evil. What sometimes goes unnoticed is the Rabbis’ attempts to distill Judaism down to a core claim or statement. We will look at some of these statements and how traditional and modern commentators have interpreted these claims. Space is limited.
Registration required by Tuesday, June 28.
Cost: Free/members; $36/general
Register here.


Agnon at 50: Rediscovering the Great Hebrew Nobel Laureate

Wednesdays | July 12, 19, 26, and August 2 | 7:00-8:45 pm Dr. Wendy Zierler
S.Y. Agnon (1888-1970), the first and only Hebrew writer to receive the Nobel Prize, remains the most important prose writer in the Modern Hebrew literary canon, but precious few American Jewish readers are acquainted with his work. Using newly available annotated translations from the Toby Press, this four-part course will focus on Agnon’s diverse body of short fiction, which has being compared to the words of both Franz Kafka and Rebbe Nachman of Bratzlav.
COST: $110/members; $160/general
Register here.

Dr. Wendy Zierler is Sigmund Falk Professor of Modern Jewish Literature and Feminist Studies at HUC in New York. Her forthcoming book, Reel Theology, will include material introduced in this class.


Library Lunch & Learn

Thursdays | June 12:00 – 12:45 pm
Jun 1 | Shavuot, no session
Jun 15 | DOROT facilitator
Jul 6 | Beth Levick
Jul 20 | DOROT facilitator
Not meeting in August
Members of the Clergy and Senior Staff take turns leading an hour of study and discussion on topics ranging from the Holocaust in film to the history of cantorial music to Talmudic tales. Come one week or every week and join in.


Insights from Israel

Thursday | June 8; July 13 | 12:00 – 1:00 pm
Rabbi Michael Graetz
During these Library Lunch & Learn sessions, we explore the most pressing issues affecting Israel. We meet with Rabbi Graetz and his guests via video conferencing in the Rothschild Library. Rabbi Graetz is a co-founder of the Masorti (Conservative) movement in Israel and was guest scholar and interim rabbi at PAS in 2008-09.


Daf HaShavua: Weekly Talmud Study

The Blessings of Life

Fridays | through June 30 |  8:00 am, after morning minyan
Rabbi Ethan Witkovsky

Civil liberties, environmentalism and honey mustard. The rabbis in the Talmud are trying not only to decipher the Torah but also to establish a just and vibrant society. We will read through the second chapter of the Babylonian Talmud’s tractate of Bava Batra and explore rabbinic stories, legislation and thought as it pertains to issues of property rights, community, livelihood, and bees and plowing.
Registration coming soon!


Sponsored by the Rabbinical Assembly

Exploring Judaism

• January class: Thursday | June 8 | Ansche Chesed | Rabbi Joel Shaiman
• May class: Thursday | (at PAS) June 8, 15, 22, 29; July 6, 13, 20 | (at Sutton Place Synagogue) July 27; August 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 | 7:00 pm | Rabbi Mira Rivera

Exploring Judaism is a program of Jewish learning and experience. It is intended for those interested in learning more about Judaism, as well as pursuing or thinking about conversion.
For more information please contact Rabbi Neil Zuckerman at or 212-369-2600, x124, or visit